Hats off to this man

17Apr09

For all our talk we don’t actually get to show you much hatted comicality, so with some relish, and thanks to one of our most dedicated readers, we’d like to introduce you to Jon Lawrence, an Australian collector of hats that are extraordinary, comical and of historical interest.

He has “5153, plus or minus 30” hats. But he got them the hard way unlike that slothful so-called collector from Alaska, who “has 26,000 stapled to his ceiling. ‘He gets given his,’ Jon grumbles. ‘I have to go source my own.’

He works at the Australian National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour, “making model boats, dressing up as vikings and pirates, showing visitors round exhibits such as the Endeavour, submarine Onslow and round-the-world yacht First Lady.” He also re-enacts American Civil War battles — he plays a private in the 62nd New York regiment of Zouaves, his wife plays a provendore and no, we don’t know what that means.

Oh and he recently died for 22 minutes – a “minor hiccup” during a hip operation: “The nurse said I was speaking Welsh. But I was mostly dead.  The anaesthetist had to change his pants three times. They kept reviving me. So there was no brain-death thing.”

Check out a selection of his hats


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2 Responses to “Hats off to this man”

  1. 1 Russell

    I can personally attest to this, he is one of my teachers at Epping Boys High School in Sydney. Every day he comes to school wearing a different hat, when people complain that he looks unprofessional wondering around in a Beefeaters helmet, he threatens to wear his full Waffen SS uniform in to school.

    • Classic — thanks for the backing Russell.

      Personally I don’t think there are enough hats being worn in this day and age and I truly salute “Mr.” Lawrence’s championing of the hatted head. Please tell him word of his collection has travelled to Vietnam. I wonder does he have a conical hat in his collection…


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